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Suit Over Florida 'Lemon' Sours in Calif.

When Californian Bryan Shisler saw the online ad for a 2-year-old BMW M5, he decided to take the plunge. Sure, the car was 3,000 miles away in Miami, but the dealer's Web site said that it shipped vehicles "worldwide." So by mail and by fax, the Californian and the dealer consummated their transaction. But when the Beemer eventually arrived at Shisler's door -- guess what -- its condition was not as he expected.

Nor did he get what he expected when he sued the dealer in a California court. As Cathy Kirkman reports today at Silicon Valley Media Law, a California appeals court issued a decision holding that the Florida dealer's "worldwide" Internet advertising was not enough to give California courts jurisdiction. She explains:

The plaintiff argued that the dealer sold cars to Californians and used the Internet to advertise cars for sale that it would ship "worldwide."  However the court concluded that these passive Internet advertisements along with a small number of car sales to the state were insufficient to subject the dealer to jurisdiction in California.

For Shisler's sake, we can only hope that the car runs well enough to get him to a court in Florida, a state where lemons are abundant. 

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on January 19, 2007 at 03:48 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)


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